MANILA— Gone are the happy days of the Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) when moviegoers and their children line up in cinemas to watch their favorite characters every Christmas.
This year must have been so bad for the producers and cinema owners since the usual crowded theatres in the malls looked empty on the first day, December 25.
Is it because the eight entries this year did not pass the taste of moviegoers ?
As of this writing, the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has not yet released the official box office results, but based on the inquiries done by some showbiz writers, the two horror movies seem to click with the public and they are somehow doing good at the tills.
“The ExorSis”of Toni and Alex Gonzaga fare good on the first day and the horror trilogy “Huwag Kang Lalabas” featuring Kim Chiu, Beauty Gonzales and Aiko Melendez
“Kun Maupay Man it Panahon,” “Love at First Stream,” “Big Night,” “A Hard Day,” are running on the third, fourth, fifth and sixth place followed by “Nelia” and “Huling Ulan sa Tag-araw.”
There are even reports that there were films which were stripped off their screening time and automatically went on last day and gave the priority to the movie with revenue.
It was so sad to note that despite reports that the audience increased in the evening, there were cinemas with one screening only.
Netizens have different opinions like there should be movies for children like the ones featuring Vic Sotto and Vice Ganda but, producers could have contemplated that children are yet allowed in movie houses since most of them are not yet vaccinated.
Based on the two horror movies which are somehow doing good, people are still looking for the same formula.
It is hoped that the audience would still pick up in the coming days and producers are looking forward to seeing more people to watch especially after the Gabi ng Parangal tomorrow, December 27.
Veteran showbiz columnist Ed de Leon on his Facebook page wrote, “Lagapak ang MMFF ngayong araw ng Pasko. Hinahanap ng mga tao ang mga pelikulang pambata, at yung sikat na mga artista.
“Naulit na naman ang karanasan noong 2016 na ang kasali ay puro mga pelikulang indie, at wala halos promo. May mga cancelled screening pa dahil walang taong pumasok.
“In short, walang pelikulang kumita. Kaya pala walang say ang mga pra la la.”
Vlogger Michael Louie “Byx” Almacen suggested, “Sana, mag-cinema tour ang mga artista para kahit papaano, magpuntahan ang mga tao sa sinehan.”
The 47th MMFF entries might even earn thru streaming in different platforms like KTX, Vivamax, Upstream, RAD, among others.
The festival committee is continuously encouraging the public to support this year’s MMFF by watching them in cinemas. With all the safety protocols, they hope the public would look at it as a support to the film industry.
And while the industry and other agencies are also on hand in giving assistance to the typhoon victims, the people in the entertainment industry should be helping each other in this time of need.
Watching the movies in theatres would be a great aid the stakeholders could do to bring back the enthusiasm and luster to the movie industry.
It is hoped that the entries in this year’s MMFF would pick up in the coming days. (ECD/MTVN)